Departure of Superintendent KNI


TOPEKA, Kansas (WIBW) – The Kansas Neurological Institute said goodbye to one superintendent and hello to another who has retired from the organization.

The Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services said Kansas Neurological Institute superintendent Brent Widick retired from his post on Friday, December 10, after 24 years serving the people of Kansas.

KDADS said Widick first arrived at KNI in 1986 as a direct social worker. In addition to pursuing other career options that emerged along the way, including five years at the former Kansas Department of Social Services and Rehabilitation, he said Widick had worked most of his professional life at hospital in various positions.

As KNI’s Program Director from 2007 to 2013, KDADS said Widick has provided guidance and leadership to the more than 300 staff who provide residential and psychological care and services, as well as sustained employment and community outreach to those who live there.

KDADS said Widick was appointed Acting Superintendent where he served from December 2013 until April 2014 when he was promoted to Superintendent after Barney Hubert retired.

“Superintendent Widick leaves us with a legacy of commitment, exceptional standard of care and influential advocacy for people with severe disabilities through sometimes unprecedented challenges,” said KDADS Secretary Howard. “I am grateful for Brent’s distinguished service at the hospital where he is trusted and respected by both his staff and the people who live at KNI and their families and guardians. We are sorry to see him go but wish him the best for his retirement. He will be sorely missed. “

Superintendent Widick, looking back on his time at KNI, said: “When I leave this week, I will have many wonderful stories and memories and relationships that will last a lifetime. Over the years I have had the pleasure of working with some truly amazing people and feel blessed to have KNI in my life for so long. KNI works together to ensure that the people living here receive the quality supports and services they deserve. I will always be proud of what we have accomplished together.

Howard said she appointed Barney Hubert, former KNI superintendent, as acting superintendent. She said Hubert started his career at KNI in 1978 as a business manager and retired as superintendent in 2013. He also briefly worked for SRS before making KNI his permanent professional home for 35 year.

After retiring from KNI, KDADS said Hubert continued to work part-time as a Quality Improvement Specialist for the Council on Quality Leadership in Supports for People with Disabilities before retiring at early 2021. In this position, he said he has participated in and led accreditation exams and organized training and organizational development activities for providers who serve people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and others. social service needs in the United States and occasionally in Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

“We are pleased that Barney Hubert has agreed to serve again the State and the residents of KNI to help us ensure a smooth transition as we conduct a nationwide search for Superintendent Widick’s permanent replacement,” said Howard said. “Barney is a valuable asset with the experience to take the reins of the facility and ensure first-class continuing care. “

Hubert’s first day of return to KNI was December 6, 2021.

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